In order to celebrate the ‘International Women’s Day’ and increase the understanding of the Greek society about the COSCO Piraeus project, Counselor Ni Ying, wife of Chinese Ambassador Zou Xiaoli, organised representatives of women in Athens to visit Piraeus Container Terminal S. A. (PCT). Over 60 people attended the event including the wife and daughter-in-law of Minister of State Flambouraris, the wife and daughter of the mayor of Aspropyrgos, wife of the mayor of Megara, Vietnamese Ambassador to Greece, Chile Ambassador to Greece, wife of Ambassador of Mexico to Greece, vice-president of WIC, representatives of overseas women in Greece, women journalists and the women’s group of the Chinese Embassy.Women representatives visited Pier 2 and 3 of PCT and listened to introduction about the company’s past achievements and future plans with great interest.
On this occasion, Ambassador Zou Xiaoli sent festival greetings and gave a speech on Sino-Greek relations. He said that after COSCO was declared by the Greek Privatisation Fund the preferred investor to buy a 67 percent stake of Piraeus Port Authority (PPA), several people habe shown strong interest in the project. He quoted the old Chinese saying, ‘it is better to see once than to hear a hundred times’, which means, ‘seeing is believing’.
Additionally, Ambassador Zou stressed four points.
- First, China is confident that Greece can walk out of the crisis. Greece boasts advantageous geographical location, sound transportation networks of land, sea and air, rich cultural and tourism resources, innovative enterprises and research institutes, professionals and skilled labour, which constitute important foundations for the recovery of the Greek economy. The ultimate goal of reform is to find a path of development that suits the calls of the times and specific national conditions. It is by no means easy. Difficulties and challenges are inevitable, which also bear new driving force for hope and development. The reform process of China in the past three decades has proven this time and again. The path leading Greece out of the crisis might be uneven, but the future will definitely be bright.
- Second, China-Greece cooperation enjoys broad prospects. The Piraeus Port project will not only drive trade and investment cooperation between the two countries, but will also facilitate bilateral exchanges in tourism, finance, culture, education, and scientific innovation. The EU supports Greece’s efforts to revitalise the economy. It should also support Greece-China cooperation in Piraeus. Increasing Chinese investment in Greece will benefit Europe as a whole, for China-EU economic ties will become stronger and more vibrant.
- Third, COSCO is a member of the big family of Piraeus. The success of PCT is not only COSCO’s success, it is also a success for Greece, for it is a result of win-win cooperation. This will also be the case for the new PPA. It is true that PCT and PPA are Chinese investment projects, but they remain Greek and they belong to the Greeks. PCT will always be a Greek terminal, and Piraeus always a Greek port. Both PCT and the new PPA will continue to operate under Greek laws, employ local managers and workers, cooperate with local businesses and contribute to revenues of the Greek government and local authorities. The port and various facilities invested by COSCO will be Greek assets. They will remain on the land of Greece and serve the Greek people.
- Fourth, the Chinese economy remains a driving force behind the world economy, whose recovery is still weak. We are confident to realise the growth target of 6.5% to 7% in 2016, which will remain the highest among major economies. We are fully aware of the difficulties and challenges ahead. Through comprehensive deepening of reforms, we will strengthen international cooperation, improve the quality and efficiency of economic growth and achieve new developments at a higher level. It is for sure that a new round of economic growth in China will make greater contribution to the world.
Ambassador Zou pointed out at the end of his speech that confidence, trust and cooperation are the foundation for overcoming difficulties and realising common development and prosperity.
Counselor Ni Ying thanked women representatives for actively participating in the event. She said that the Chinese Embassy in Greece was ready to enhance ties with women from all walks of life so as to increase mutual understanding and friendship.
Source: Embassy of China in Greece